My coworkers and I are obsessed with getting lunch from a little farm-sourced outpost called Blue Barn
where salads are huge and hearty and healthy- among other amazing menu items. My go-to order is their Tostada Salad, so I've recreated my own. It's kind of just as good.Summery Tostada Salad
1 cup Organic Spinach
1/2 cup Organic Parsley
1/2 cup Organic Cilantro
1/2 cup Organic Corn Kernels
1/2 cup Organic Black Beans
1 small Tomato, chopped
1/2 or 1 whole Avocado, chopped
1/2 cup strips of Organic Tortilla Chips
Juice of 1 whole Lemon
1/4 cup Olive Oil
Sprinkles of Cayenne, Sea Salt and Black Pepper
*Optional: 1/4 cup Organic Kohlrabi or any Microgreens (pictured here; great way to sneak in some more greens)
*Also optional but highly recommended: Chopped Jicama
In a large bowl, bring all ingredients together. Toss it all up, serve and enjoy!
I love me a good pesto pasta. Add some scallops to top it off and boom, a satisfying dinner your whole family will love.
Step 1: Easy dairy-free Pesto:
2 cups Organic Basil Leaves
1/2 cup Organic Parsley Leaves
1/2-3/4 cup Olive Oil
1/2 cup Raw Almonds
3 Garlic Cloves
1 Tbsp Sea Salt
In a food processor, pulse and blend on low for 1 minute, until finely chopped and sort of creamy consistency is achieved. Stop occasionally to scrape down sides and stir around. Give it a few more whirs. Once noodles are cooked, rinsed and drained completely, transfer noodles to a pot and add pesto in, mixing until well integrated. Transfer pesto'd pasta to a nice big plate.
Step 2: Tender Tomatoes
3 Tbsp Olive Oil
1 Organic Tomato, chopped
2 Garlic Cloves, minced
Salt and Pepper to taste
In a separate pot, bring together all ingredients to a simmer over low heat. Cover and let cook for 5 minutes until tomatoes are tender. Turn off heat. Add mixture to plate of pesto'd pasta.
Step 3: Gluten-Free Breaded Scallops
1 cup Gluten-Free All Purpose Flour
1 Tbsp Sea Salt
1/2 Tbsp Grated Black Pepper
8 Scallops or so..
In a plastic bag bring together all ingredients and shake; add in Scallops and really shake it all up until Scallops are nicely coated with mixture. In an oiled frying pan, fry Scallops for 3-5 minutes each side over low-medium heat. Let cool, and transfer to plate as the final topping on the pasta. You're ready to eat!
I love this time of year when Spring turns into the early days of Summer. And with that I bring you a creamy cruciferous soup that is a guaranteed crowd (and belly) pleaser- and perfect for a light but hearty, and early Summer dinner. Cauliflower is totally underrated but they provide excellent digestive and detox support what with the mighty amounts of antioxidants, omega 3's, dietary fiber, protein, B Vitamins, Vitamin C and Vitamin K- which regulate inflammation. Don't take antioxidants for granted, for they protect you against free-radical damage and other diseases caused by oxidative stress like cardiovascular ailments and cancer! Other veggies in the cruciferous kingdom include broccoli, kale, cabbage and collards- all which have a compact head consisting of a central stalk with flower buds.
Creamy Cauliflower Soup
1 Head Organic Cauliflower
1" piece of Ginger
1 small Yellow Onion
2 small Organic Potatoes (optional! I skipped this go-to move and it still turned out plenty creamy and hearty)
1 Tbsp Organic Miso Paste
1 Tbsp Gluten-Free Tamari Sauce (use a splash of this and boom, no salt required)
Black Pepper and Parseley to top
Boil the first 4 ingredients together in a pot for 30 minutes over medium heat. Drain water, and transfer from pot to a blender. Blend on high for 1 whole minute. If you have a less than turbo blender, stop occasionally to scrape down sides and give it little stir. Then blend some more until creamy consistency is achieved. Transfer directly to bowl and drizzle over olive oil and sprinkle in some black pepper and chopped parsley.
ENJOY, and happy early Summer!
Nuts are crazy awesome. Versatile, flavorful and nutrient-dense
, they're easily the biggest protein source for me on a daily basis. How can one eat so many nuts? Let me count thy ways. They don't have to be straight out of the bag. Nuts are great as a 'pate
' or in this case, as nut butter for slathering on morning toast finished with your fav jelly. Remember my old post on why it's advised to soak nuts
? It's the best way to destroy enzyme inhibitors that allow us to fully digest and take in nutrients from the nuts. The other method is to roast them....
Homemade Almond Butter
1 cup Raw, Unroasted, Unsalted Almonds
First, roast the almonds by placing them on a baking sheet at 350 degrees for 20 minutes until slightly darker and fragrant. Let cool (30 min), then transfer almonds to a Vitamix, food processor or blender, and blend on high for 2 minutes until almonds are ground to a fine powder. Keep blending until a smoothy and creamy paste forms (another 2 minutes), but be sure to stop the machine for a minute so it doesn't burn out and to scrape down sides. Keep repeating these steps. Add a little salt to taste, slather over toast along with a spoonful of jelly!
Perfect for on the go mornings when you need something to hold you over until lunchtime... Make some this week!
1/2 cup Frozen Organic Blueberries
6 Frozen Organic Strawberries
1/4 cup Frozen Organic Spinach
3/4-1 cup Nut Milk (super easy to make!
2 Tbsp Flaxmeal (optional)
Blend all ingredients in a blender for 30-60 seconds (really depends on your blender), adding in more liquid as desired to achieve preferred consistency. Transfer to mason jar and get your power day started!
So... apparently many states are experiencing the warmest winter on record for some 40 years or so.. (well, atleast compared to last year, when freezing temps and blizzards swept across the country killing lots and wreaking all $ORT$ of havoc, remember??) Here in San Francisco, blossoms are a blooming. Not to mention my body thinks its Spring and I've been allergy-ridden. Hard to believe, being that it's only the 1st(ish) week of February, where in the past, this time every year meant miserable-subzerotemps-my-bones-are-freezing wintertime in NYC. Yeah, no. I don't miss that, NY!
At the end of the day, it's February, which means it's still Winter. And with that, and in keeping with the seasons, I bring forth this simple yet nourishing Winter's Stew. In my household we do well on this type of thing because it lasts us atleast 2 nights (better than 1), is cost-effective, takes minutes to prepare and is super yummers. The best part about this is not only how easy it is to make, as all it takes is chopping and throwing contents into pot, but how nutrient-dense therefore good for you it is...
Have Some Now and Have Some Tomorrow Winter's Stew (makes about 6-8 servings)
1 can Organic Aduki Beans, drained and rinsed (I use the Eden brand)
1 can Organic Kidney Beans, drained and rinsed
4 stalks Organic Celery, chopped
4 Carrots, chopped
1 medium Organic Sweet Potato, chopped
3 Organic Tomatoes, chopped
1 cup Organic Frozen or Fresh Corn Kernels
4 Organic Collard Greens or Kale, chopped
2 cups Organic Veggie Stock
3 cups Water
1 small Shallot
3-4 Garlic Cloves, crushed
Herbs and Spices
1-1/2 Tbsp Sea Salt
(or pretty much everything in your herb/spice pantry)
In a large pot, bring together garlic, shallot and 3 Tbsp of Olive Oil over medium heat. Once the sizzle, add in potatoes (for 5 minutes- stirring), then carrots, celery and tomatoes. Cook for another 5 minutes. Add in Cinnamon Stick, Bay Leaf and Veggie Stock. Cover and cook for 10 minutes. Add in corn and beans, then stir in more and more water to your liking- depending on how thick or runny (like soup!) you like it. Then in go all the herbs and spices.. It's your experiment, therefore there's no such thing here as the "right amount" of anything, because everyone has a preference. I like it spicy, others do not. I like a little less salt, my boyfriend is the opposite. I pretty much use 1/2-1 tsp of mostly everything listed under Herbs and Spices, but that's just me. Try it! Have fun.. and here's to staying even cozier this winter!
Spice up some root veggies like carrots, turnips and beets in less than 5 minutes! I've been hankering some sauerkraut so I used red cabbage...
Pickling Made Easy:
1 Quart Jar
3/4 cup Apple Cider Vinegar (Bragg's is recommended)
1/2 cup Water
1 Tbsp Sea Salt
1 Bay Leaf
1 Cinnamon Stick
1 Tbsp Black Peppercorns
1 Tbsp Fennel Seed
1 Tbsp Cumin Seed
1/2 lb Chopped Red Cabbage or 1 lb Root Veggie of choice (or mix of both!)
First, bring together the liquids and salt in a small pot, letting it boil over low heat for 7-10 minutes. Turn off heat, then pack the jar tightly with the carrots or cabbage as well as the spices, cinnamon stick and bay leaf. Lastly pour in the warmed up brine, adding more water if necessary to fill the jar up to the brim. Cover and let sit out in room temperature for at least 24 hours before enjoying with mixed greens, in tacos, with grains or just straight out of the jar!
Enter, the Sesame Seed.. Small in shape but loaded with goodness, these nutty seeds contains substances that belong to a group of fibers called lignans, which lower cholesterol. Due to its high levels of copper they are a wonderful ant-inflammatory food and can be beneficial for those suffering from rheumatoid arthritis. Copper also activates an enzyme necessary for building elastin and collagen, which provides structure and elasticity to the bones and joints. In the hull of the seeds are loads of calcium, which is a mighty mineral that lowers blood pressure, reduces migraines (which are caused by blood vessel spasms) and builds bone structure and overall health.
Grind up some Sesame Seeds with a bit of oil to make Tahini Dressing, a wonderfully tasty Middle Eastern fundamental.Drizzle over a boring salad and bam, best salad ever it becomes..
Here's how easy it is:
2 Tbsp Sesame Seeds
1 tsp Olive or Unrefined, untoasted Sesame Oil
1/8 cup Water (or more depending on desired consistency)
Juice of 1/2 Lemon
1 tsp Sea Salt
In a food processor (or blender) grind Sesame Seeds until smooth, then add in Oil and Salt. Slowly add in water and lemon juice, blending until smooth. Enjoy over everything...
Now that the Holidays are over, now what? Back to the program is what..
I just came back from an unbelievable getaway to Thailand which consisted of savory, tasty and fresh Thailand food x 3 meals everyday, snorkeling and swimming alongside wildly-neon fish, riding motos, basking in age-old and mirror-tiled palaces, reading for leisure (!), swimming through an emerald cave, falling in love with an elephant, gawking at bats (I know), and getting massaged...
I crawled my way to a yoga class last night for the first time in weeks and I kind of fell asleep in child's pose. The process of getting my groove back has been trying, but at least it's begun. "Letting go" and keeping up with healthy habits during the winter months are always more difficult to sludge through. But here I am, being my best cheerleader and yours too. You can do it! Get back on it and find your groove again. A bunch of friends and coworkers are embarking on juice cleanses this week, which is a splendid idea and a great kickstart. Juicing
has tons of benefits and is great to implement as a regimen, not to mention extremely popular these days. Honorable mentions include Living Greens
, Can Can
, Organic Avenue
, for starters.But what happens post-juicing?
How to maintain that glow, lightness of being, clearer eyes, bloat-free belly and improved energy? It's easier than you think to change your food and get on a path that's not necessarily FREE of gluten, alcohol, sugar, caffeine, meat and dairy, but one that contains a lot LESS of these categories which are taxing on the body. I can show you how!
I usually lead a nourishing food cleanse and detox seasonally both with private clients and at Yoga Garden
. Stay tuned on the next group cleanse, btdubs. The point of my cleanse program is not to convert people to veganism, but more about providing the tools to help people make good food choices that ultimately make them feel way, way better. Besides, you are what you eat, so what you eat should be clean, nourishing, nutrient-rich, delicious food that is ideally prepared with love.
Stock up on these yummy Detox foods:
(Sweet Potatoes, Carrots, Beets to puree for soups or for roasting)
*Broccoli & Cauliflower
(also perfect as soups and as a roasted side dish)
(Kale and Arugula top my charts; mixed greens =less boring)
*Nuts and Seeds
(an unsalted variety for snacking or pureeing as dressing!)
(for soups and salad dressings)
(red, white, navy, mung, garbanzo, black- for dips and salads)
*Gluten-free whole grains
: millet, quinoa, brown rice, amaranth (for nutrient-dense salads and morning porridges)
Big diff between eating and feeding. Don't eat just to eat. Feed yourself. Nourish, enjoy and take care.
Happy New Year indeed.
Peas and love,
Tis the season for lots of cooking.. and baking!
I used to stay away from baking; I could never get anything to rise properly or get my cookies soft enough. But alas, Babycakes came along and everything changed
Try these surprisingly simple and super delish morning muffins!
1 lb Granny Smiths, peeled, cored and diced into 1" cubes
1 lb Pink Ladies, same
1 Tbsp Ground Cinnamon
1/2 Agave Nectar
1/4 Fresh Lemon Juice
2 cups Bob's Red Mill All Purpose Gluten Free Baking Flour
2 tsp Baking Powder
2 tsp Baking Soda
1 tsp Xanthan Gum
1 tsp Salt
2 Tbsp Ground Cinnamomn
1/4 tsp Ground Nutmeg
1/2 Coconut Oil (gotta melt the solid! to do this, place entire jar with top off in a small pot of boiling water)
2/3 cup Agave Nectar
2/3 Rice Milk2 Tbsp Vanilla Extract
Preheat oven to 325. Line a baking sheet with parchment. In a bowl, toss together apples, cinnamon, agave and lemon until apples are completely coated. Spread mixture over prepared baking sheet. Bake apples on center rack for 35 min, rotating the sheet 180 deg after 20 min; apples should be soft by then. Let apples stand for 30 min.
Now for the muffins- keep oven at 325; line a standard 12-cup muffin tin with paper liners. In a bowl, whisk all the dry goods: flour, powder, soda, gum, salt, cinnamon and nutmeg. Then add in the wet stuff: oil, agave, milk and vanilla to the dry ingredients and stir until the batter is smooth. Add 1 cup of roasted apples and stir to distribute.
Pour 1/3 cup batter into each prepared cup. Bake muffins on center rack for 20 min, rotating the tin 180 deg after 15 min until muffins are golden brown and fork inserted into center comes out clean.
Let cool and enjoy with a cuppa tea!
Happiest Holidays to you and yours!